Probably the longest established long distance race in the country, since 1987 the East Coast Piers Race has attracted top continental sailors, and development classes, along with the cream of big cat sailors. However, the East Coast Piers Race isn’t just for big cats – a shorter, but no less demanding course (known as The Colne Point Race) is always available for smaller cats. The Marconi team have the organisation down to a fine art – with a spacious marquee, a huge grassy boat park in which to camp and park, intimate little bar, and excellent race organisation. The course is marked with cruiser “mother ships” flying orange flags, and quite easy for first timers. It is a challenge, but a manageable one. You sail from the start of Osea Pier, down the Blackwater Estuary to Bradwell, across the Estuary, and then along the coast passing Clacton Pier and turning at Walton Pier. Saturday racing counts as Traveller 4 of the British Spitfire Class Association Traveller Series.